THE COMPLETE BRIGADIER GERARD
ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE, BRIGADIER GERARD, AND NAPOLEON
By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Owen Dudley Edwards (Editor)

400 pages, 4.96 x 7.72 inches, paperback.

Between the years 1892 and 1906, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, created Brigadier Gerard to replace Sherlock Holmes, whom he "killed off" in 1893. Conan Doyles inspiration for Brigadier Gerard was the famous Baron de Marbot. You are probably familiar with Marbot, especially since his memoirs are features among my electronic books. Of all the memoirs to come out of the Napoleonic Wars, Marbots are generally accepted as the best. Although there is some doubt that he did everything he claims to have done, his memoirs are nevertheless an invaluable source of information and excellent reading. Conan Doyle, whose great-uncle, Major General Pack was one of Wellington's chief commanders at Waterloo, and who had several other relatives present in that battle, was thoroughly educated on the on the family's experiences in the Napoleonic Wars by his mother. Conan Doyle created the character of Brigadier Gerard after purchasing a copy of the Memoirs of Baron de Marbot. He admitted that even though Napoleon was the singularly most important figure in history, his personal preference was for Marbot.

The Brigadiere Gerard stories were popular around the turn of the century. Conan Doyle considered them to be better and more important than his Sherlock Holmes books; however, as it turned out, Sherlock Holmes has stood the test of time and Brigadier Gerard went into oblivion for the better part of the 20th century.

I am delighted to announce that Brigadier Gerard has been resurrected.  All of the adventures that Conan Doyle wrote about this soldier of soldiers is now available in one volume, The Complete Brigadier Gerard.

Gerard is so similar to Marbot that you think of his adventures as being the further adventures of Marbot. However, Conan Doyle read many memoirs in his preparation for the Brigadier Gerard series of books. Besides Marbot, there is a smattering of Coignet in his personality, as well as some other real life soldiers and even one or two fictional characters invented by other authors earlier in the 19th century.

If you purchase this book, you will probably want to purchase The Great Shadow: Arthur Conan Doyle, Brigadier Gerard, and Napoleon, which is also for sale on this website. It's an excellent book that is a fitting companion for The Complete Brigadier Gerard. Think of  The Complete Brigadier Gerard as a car and The Great Shadow . . . as the owner's manual for that car.  Driving the car is fun but it's sure nice to have that owner's manual to figure out how it works. The Great Shadow . . . will provide an insight into the characters of Conan Doyle and Brigadier Gerard, as well as some other fictional Napoleonic personalities created by Conan Doyle. You will learn of the similarities and dissimilarities of Sherlock Holmes and Brigadier Gerard. You will learn more about Arthur Conan Doyle, the man.

From the back cover of the book:

"Of course I read every Sherlock Holmes story, but the works I like even more than the detective stories are his [Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's] great historical stories."
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Sir Winston Churchill
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Dumas's Four Musketeers all in one ... Don Quixote inextricably entangled with Sancho Panza ... Tolstoy's War and Peace harmonised with the Marx Brothers ... Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Brigadier Gerard stories surely constitute the finest series of historical short stories in literature, mingling the comedy and the tragedy, the pathos and the irony, or, in Napoleon's phrase, the sublime with the ridiculous. It is Napoleon and his Europe, his dedicated followers and the awakening nationalisms of the peoples they enraged, possessing our minds in savage realism and enrapturing romance. And in Brigadier Etienne Gerard, Arthur Conan Doyle created a hero worthy to take his place in the great line stretching from Homer's Odysseus to George MacDonald Fraser's Flashman, nearest of all perhaps to Stevenson's Allan Breck and Wodehouse's Bertie Wooster.

For the first time all the Gerard stories appear in a single volume, together with their forgotten precursor 'A Foreign Office Romance', assembled with a new introduction and notes by Conan Doyle's biographer Owen Dudley Edwads of Edinburgh University, general editor of The Oxford Sherlock Holmes.

Canongate Publishers, Ltd.   ISBN 0862415349

Click here to order The Complete Brigadier Gerard!


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